Five letters woman used to scam flight upgrades

A FORMER airline employee is facing up to 20 years in prison after pleading guilty to scamming her employer of about $1.1 million by using a special ticketing code.

Tiffany Jenkins, a former gate agent for US airline JetBlue, used her position to convert low-cost flights to more expensive flights and destinations for friends, family, and acquaintances, according to the US Attorney's Office in the District of Massachusetts, Fox News reported.

 

Jenkins used a special code, ‘INVOL’, to scam the airline. Picture: AP/Steve Helber/file
Jenkins used a special code, ‘INVOL’, to scam the airline. Picture: AP/Steve Helber/file

 

Jenkins, 31, pleaded guilty to three counts of wire fraud. She was arrested and charged in November 2018.

Jenkins had access to JetBlue's computer reservation database and had the ability to use the special code, "INVOL," which is short for "involuntary exchange", to change flights for customers at no additional cost.

This code is meant to be used by agents to change flights for customers who miss their flights or experience a death in the family.

During a 15-month period, Jenkins used the code approximately 505 times for more than 100 different passengers.

The US attorney's office said many of those exchanges occurred after the passenger first booked low-price domestic flights. Jenkins exchanged those tickets for more expensive international flights instead.

The charge for wire fraud carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $US250,000 ($365,000).

Jenkins is scheduled to be sentenced in January 2020.


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